Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Combining Ideas

So, no sooner do I post about combining the Journal Your Christmas class and Ali's ideas for December Daily then, what do you know, Ali posts a whole slew of Christmas related projects and actually suggests that you could combine the two ideas! I'm patting myself on the back that I thought of it BEFORE I read it on someone's blog!

From Ali's blog:
Shimelle's Journal You Christmas Class : this is how I got started a few years back doing something creative to celebrate the holiday season. If you are looking for daily jump-starts and specific prompts this is definitely a highly-recommended class. The difference between Shimelle's class and what I am doing for December Daily is that I am simply documenting the days whereas Shimelle is guiding you through memory and creative prompts each day from December 1 through January 6th. You could definitely combine the two. Another cool thing is that once you sign up you are considered and alumni and are able to participate in following years for no cost.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Scrapbooking Update and Journal Your Christmas

At the beginning of October I started this little blog to tell you all what I'm up to, share some of my creative side, and improve on my skills in the digital world. Not sure how much I've accomplished, but I have to tell you - I put together that gorgeous little "Gratitude Album" and managed to keep up with it for a week. A few sporadic days since then, but not much to get excited about. I'm disappointed with myself, but moving on. I'll try to fill it out with pictures from Thanksgiving Day!

Before I had even gotten the Gratitude Album underway, a new project sparked my interest - the December Daily Album as shown on Ali Edward's Blog. To help me live in the present and enjoy the Christmas season. To push me to get past the commercialism and really feel the spirit of the season. But I really didn't intend to get as "fancy" as Ali showed it with the different size pages and all - I just wanted a day by day album to document December. So I bought an 8x8 album, papers, etc. and planned a simple themed album following instructions from a couple of Simple Scrapbooks publications. Well, the base of the album is in the process of construction and I plan to get the base pages done so that during December I really only have to add photos and journaling to document each day. In all my spare time of course.

Well.... with my lack of stellar progress on the Gratitude Album I was starting to stress over what I'm going to PUT in this album each day. And as I was stressing, and blog surfing, I came across a post on Donna Downey's blog telling me all about this great class she is taking called "Journal Your Christmas". So I followed the link (go ahead, click on it, my story can wait) and... prayers answered! A native Kansas City gal now living in London, Shimelle Laine, is going to send me a prompt every day from December 1st through January 6th with ideas for photos, journaling and creativity. So I can just follow those prompts to fill my album! I'm really going to get this one done! Ask me to post pages! Hold me accountable!

Now, for even more fun - Shimelle is holding a little contest. If I post the photo and link on my blog, I can win a refund of my $30 class fee. Okay that would be cool, but it's the next part that really rocks my world. If I'm chosen as the random winner, I also win a FREE pass for a friend! So if you want to Journal Your Christmas leave a comment! If I win, I'll choose one of the posts to join me! Tell me why you'd like a FREE PASS to Journal Your Christmas!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Are you an ALIEN?

I read this on another blog and thought it was interesting enough to share...

fi yuo cna raed tihs, yuo hvae a sgtrane mnid too
Cna yuo raed tihs? Olny 55 plepoe out of 100 can.
i cdnuolt blveiee taht I cluod aulaclty uesdnatnrd waht I was rdanieg.
The phaonmneal pweor of the hmuan mnid! Aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it dseno’t mtaetr in waht oerdr the ltteres in a wrod are, the olny iproamtnt tihng is taht the frsit and lsat ltteer be in the rghit pclae.
The rset can be a taotl mses and you can siltl raed it whotuit a pboerlm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe.
Azanmig huh? Yaeh and I awlyas tghuhot slpeling was ipmorantt!

Pretty cool, eh?

Monday, November 17, 2008

I'm in College Again

at least in my dreams anyway. I have this recurring dream (nightmare?) that I'm back in college. But always when I have this dream I am missing classes, in danger of flunking out, or taking final exams without the benefit of having attended any of the classes. Last night it went like this - I was back in college with a full course load and a scholarship to protect. I was talking to a young, good-looking teacher's assistance, trying to find out my grade in an English class and asking what it would cost me (grade-wise) to turn in the latest paper a day late, since I had entirely blanked out on doing the paper. Not only that, I didn't even know what the topic was or what was expected of me. I also had no idea how I had done on any of the work handed in prior to this - it seems nothing was ever returned so I had no idea of my status, or if I was doing poorly, where it was I had fallen short. As he reviewed my grades, seems I had two nearly perfect papers and two that had fallen in the "D" range, so I averaged out to a low "B". Well, if you know me at all, you know that is simply not acceptable. I don't do "B" work. I do "A" work. But here I was with a low B and a late paper in my best subject. Now, to make matters worse, I had missed putting my math course on my course schedule and hadn't attended a single class since the first one or two. My next stop would be to go see the math professor and find out if I could somehow make up for everything I had missed and still finish and pass that course. I woke up in a mild panic. I am now back in my real life, way past college having graduated quite successfully thank you, but wondering why I keep having this crazy dream. Is it a symbol of feeling overwhelmed? That I'm not doing enough or doing "good enough"? That I'm afraid of failure??? Any dream interpreters reading my blog want to help me out here?

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Mouse in the House

Our excitement for yesterday was having a mouse in the house - or more specifically - a "microtus pennsylvanicus" or meadow vole. (photo borrowed from the internet - we were way too busy trying to get the thing OUT to take photos!) This is the second time we've had one of these little visitors - the first critter - last fall when we still had a patio door off the family room - was much cuter with big ears. This guy was just fat - but still amazingly fast. At one point we had him cornered and Jay actually grabbed the critter in his bare hands - the critter still got away. Rachel and Becca didn't want any part of it. I only screamed once - when furballus superfasticus ran from under the sofa to under the love seat right between my legs! Ashley was interested and took part in the hunt for awhile too. After chasing Sir Pest around the family room for awhile, he finally darted out seemingly the same way he'd come in - through a space at the bottom of the garage door where he had apparently chewed a hole through the door sweep. So we discovered an immediate need for household repairs and the furry little rodent escaped with his life (which was infinitely preferable to having to place traps, so we are all happy about that)! No doubt he will now spend the Winter exacting his revenge on my front lawn for being so unceremoniously chased out.

During the course of chasing this little guy around the family room, he left us lots of little presents - behind the t.v., under the sofa, in the far corners of the room. So now furniture has been moved and the room has been thoroughly vacuumed, including the cat fur behind the sofa, and the carpet spot cleaned in every area when I found evidence of the little furball. I can honestly say my family room floor hasn't been this clean since the carpet was originally installed. Also thanks to our furry friend, and a quick trip to Home Depot, we now have a new door sweep and strip foam insulation at the base of the garage door. Meaning less draft from the garage into the family room. Might even save on our heating bill this winter! All because of a mouse.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008


Right now I'm so proud to be an American! I stayed up last night only long enough to see that the election was moving in the direction of change, but not long enough to see anyone declared as winner. This morning I was anxious to sign on and see how the map played out, how many electoral votes each candidate had, and more importantly, how many POPULAR votes (can't we just dump the electoral college already?). What I wasn't prepared for was the video of Obama's acceptance speech.
Click on the link to listen to his speech. Obama is clearly a man who understands the law of attraction and how to reach into the hearts of a crowd. His speech moved me to tears (something I'm not easily given to). I also thought McCain's concession speech was very classy and well done. I don't agree with all of Obama's ideas or positions and I'm as concerned as the next guy about the economy, taxes, my 401K, etc. But he gives me hope - that true change (better, not just different) is in the air. And I hope all McCain supporters will heed his request to set aside the differences and work together to rebuild America. So to America, YES WE CAN!

Monday, November 3, 2008

My Gratitude Album

From the November/December 2008 issue of Simple Scrapbooks, I decided to try the "Gratitude" Album for this month.

Before Photo:
I bought this cute little album at Target. It is a 4x6 horizontal orientation photo album with enough sleeves for up to 100 photos. Since I'm planning to use 2 pages per day, I would have some leftover space at the end, but I saved about 12 pages for Thanksgiving to add everyone else's thoughts on gratitude and photos of our family gathering. I downloaded Cathy Z.'s template for the jounaling from

After photo:

But it wasn't quite right for the Fall colors I wanted to use, so I set to work altering the cover - removed the pink ribbon, painted with Making Memories "meadow" acrylic paint, added rub-on letters, some old stickers, and new piece of ribbon and voila! What do you think?